Evaluate my use of lingq. Too much at once?

I’ve been using Lingq for about a month now and I’m very excited to finally find a machine that fits my learning method.

I’m using Lingq to do 6 languages at once spending 2 hours a day in total on them. I already have Mandarin from living in China for some time. I lived in Germany up until the age of 6. I’ve studied Spanish for a year at middle school and failed French at GCSE. Finally, I’ve dabbled in Esperanto and Portuguese.

I originally just started dabbling in all these languages using duolingo to eat up a long commute every day. After finding Lingq I’ve steadily reduced my duolingo usage to where it is now dormant.

My 2 hours on lingq are spent like this.
1 Around 50 minutes of French going through beginner lessons. I’ve decided to focus more on this than the others so that I make guaranteed reasonable progress in something. However, I don’t feel I can do much more than 50 minutes on one language.
2 I just do one intermediate new lesson in German every day. Unlike any of the romance languages I’m less concerned about doing flashcards and will just absorb words through future lessons. I usually spend about ten to fifteen minutes on German.
3 For Chinese I’ll just go though an advanced text. Same as German I’m not too bothered about the flashcards and if I don’t use Lingq for Chinese it’s no big deal as I’m working in Chinese all day anyway. Maybe I’ll spend give minutes on Chinese.
4 For Spanish and Portuguese I spend about fifteen to twenty minutes each on them everyday. I complete the same lessons for each of them, though Portuguese is behind Spanish and likewise Spanish is behind French. Some would say this is overload but I find there’s so many similarities between them that they all mutually reinforce each other. After doing Chinese they all feel more like dialects than separate languages.
5 Finally I’ll do a quick shot of Esperanto which will usually take five minutes to go through a basic lesson. Most of the words have roots in the languages I’m already studying so it would seem a shame not to add it on especially as the grammar is regular.

Sounds a lot but I’ve already dropped Swedish, Dutch and Italian from that list in order to chase and focus on the more widely spoken languages of the world. Had a brief look at Russian and decided this would truly not fit in nicely with what I’m already doing, due to the extra work it would create.

I have no particular aims other than that I maintain my progress in all 6 languages. Would be good to be at an intermediate level in all of them within 4/3 years. As such I just want to keep the learning fun but consistent.

Anyone think I’m being too ambitious and perhaps not considering some potential pitfalls?

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Well I like your schedule here on lingq, I am also using lingq to maintain and improve various languages every day, For me these languages are English and French in which I am most advanced. Then Spanish and Italian where my knowledge of Spanish is slightly better than Italian but thanks to using lingq for Italian now for over a year it has improved already a lot . The last language is Greek. This is my weakest languages and I do not concentrate on it at present a lot. I would be tempted to learn more Portuguese and review my knowledge of Russian but I decided to postpone these two for later.

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Language learning is a personal process, so no one can really tell what will be the best approach to you, though I would say that it might a bit too much. I don’t start learning another language unless I am able to already read and listen in my other languages to a good level. The thing is that the more you divide your time, the slower your progress will be in each language. And the slower your progress will the the more time it will take to read content of your interest.

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I also have found that as I have gotten more and more advanced, it’s become harder to keep continuous study of many languages.

For me, I have found that 2 or 3 languages in my rotation works, but 5 was too many to maintain progress in. I totally know the feeling though: It’s just exciting thinking about all these different languages that you can’t just focus on one.

Having said that, don’t worry if you are being perfect or if you should be doing this language more or that one or if you aren’t being efficient… just go. Go… and read/listen to what you feel like. it will work itself out.


How has your progress been? Do you feel you crash on some days?

That’s good advice I well keep that in mind and should I feel it’s too much I’ll drop to concentrating more on French.

You are doing some highly different languages though. My own feeling is that learning Chinese is far more difficult than learning all the European languages I’m doing now.

Likewise after having a brief crack at Russian it felt like it would take up as much time as doing the the romance languages I’m working on now.

My plan is to get a decent level in the relatively easy languages I’m working on at the moment and then later one at a time focus on Arabic and Russian which would complete my list of U.N. languages. After that I’ll try for some lesser spoken more exotic languages.

I agree it’s really exciting looking at all the languages on here. Went on Japanese advanced level last night to see how many words I could understand from Chinese. Was nearly always right with my guess. Couldn’t help think what a shame it is that Japanese doesn’t use more characters and that Korean and Vietnam no longer use them. Would be good to communicate by text even if one couldn’t speak.

To each his own, as they say; and do what you enjoy doing.

That being said, I’m not sure what you mean by intermediate. Assuming your goal is fluency (eg B2), your approach sounds crazy to me. Focus 75-80% of your efforts on the language you are “really” learning, and the other 20-25% on the the languages you know VERY well and are sharpening up. If you are just interested in exploring languages and seeing what they are like, then cut some time out of your 20-25% slice to do that. Just know you aren’t really going to be learning them until later when you study them for real.

If your Chinese is very good, sharpen that up however you like. Decide German, Spanish, or French as the one you’d like to actually study and learn for real.

LILinguist thanks for the advice. After some experimenting this is what I’m going to do. I’ll focus more on French. Better to make rapid progress in one than slow progress in all. I’m being too greedy for knowledge.

The others I will dabble in time to time. I found if I didn’t have time to do the other languages in the day I would feel disheartened.

I’m immersed in Chinese and have been living in China for 12 years so that’s not a problem.

Sounds like a plan. Sorry for the delay in reply. I wasn’t able to get into the forum part of the site for a few days. As it turns out, Steve just did on video on this a few days ago when this was being discussed.

Once I hit a certain level in Spanish in terms of activities and known words, I’m going to move on to French, Russian, Arabic, or Chinese. I have an interest in all of them, but not sure when I’ll get there or which to do first. Arabic is pretty much out at the moment due to its many dialects and absence on LingQ. Once it’s a supported language at LingQ for real, and possibly once Steve gets around to it, I’ll know more about it to make a better decision. I think realistically I’m looking at French or Russian. Once I decide, it’ll be 80-90% the new language and 10-20% of Spanish sharpening and dabbling.

Regards and best of luck!

I think over ambitious is only really an issue if you don’t have the time to commit to those ambitions. I’ve been struggling a bit with flitting between different languages. Now uni is over I’m trying to work out a serious schedule to commit to at least some of the ones I have a strong interest in. It sounds like you have a great way of working out your languages.
A potential pitfall that learning your selection screams at me is that most of them are romance languages. However, there are plenty of pluses to that, the vocabulary will be the same. I personally find it easier to learn a language that sounds / reads as very distinct from another language. I gave up on Dutch because it was so similar to German. I really didn’t want to start spelling German words in a Dutch way or vice versa. That said there are plenty of linguists who learn languages close to one another and have a great deal of success with it. Just look at Steve! :slight_smile: